Raising aspirations and embracing the diversity that studying a language can offer.

On the 15th of June, Northgate welcomed in to school Kyle Mcclelland. He opened our minds with his energy and his many ventures, despite his young age and being a second-year undergraduate at the UEA in French and Italian.

He started the day by spending time with a group of Year 10 boys and described the many amazing things he has achieved so far. His work ethic is admirable and his mindset focused. Last year in lockdown he set up his own teaching website “Teachmyniche” as well as a mini burger van business, men’s jewellery company and now he is presently working as a chef/waiter for Wagamama and a shopper for Iceland at some obscenely early hours of the morning. How does he do it?! He clearly recognises that life is not all about success (he admitted also to his ventures that failed) but it is about creating opportunities and possibilities, about making things happen. The Year 10s were able to reflect on their own personal goals and then decide what it would take to reach them. Rather than being a possibility, he helped actualise some of those personal goals and create movement towards them.

Then for the remainder of the morning he joined us in the MFL department. He shared his experiences of working as an Au Pair in Paris and how he had, despite not initially intending to go to university, taken up a course which would allow him further travel next year and the opportunity to continue to develop his interest in teaching as an assistant teacher in Madrid. He also outlined the many opportunities available for linguists. It was a pleasure to host him in school and we look forward to hearing about his adventures over the next 12 months. The message really was never say never to life. We might not all be able to change the world but we can change how we operate within it. In the words of Viktor Frankl: “When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves”.